Is Your Business Rewarding Customers for Repeat Business?
My wife and I were planning our next vacation. We were thinking of going to sunny Florida maybe hitting Disneyworld or Universal Studios. We both love going on thrill rides, visiting theme parks and so on.
While in the planning stages we were determining should we drive down which is about a 20 hour car ride or fly. Both means have pros and cons. The obvious for driving would be the time, although we both love to take road trips.
During the time of year that we wanted to go a cost for a flight was extremely high. It was nearly $300 per person round trip. So cost was a factor when it came to flying. However, we remembered we had some airline miles, but were unsure if we had enough. A couple of phone calls later, some internet surfing and poof! We had two round trip tickets on coach.
The use of points in this scenario reminded me of some other companies that I shop with that do something similar. My grocery store is an excellent example. They use points for additional savings and coupons that I can earn by being a repeat customer. For example, during the holidays, specifically around Thanksgiving, each dollar spent counts as a point. When I reach a certain number of points I can redeem them for a free Turkey. It is a pretty good deal.
Are you currently implementing a points system with your business? Studies have shown that when you implement this type of procedure people are more likely to come back to increase that value.
There are some message boards that I partake in online and with each new post you create or respond to, your credibility rating points increase. The higher that number, the more credible you become in the user community.
You should be implementing this style of system with your business. It does not matter what kind of business you have. With some creative thinking you should be able to use it. For instance, let's say you sell widgets. With each widget you sell the customer earns 5 points to their account. Now make sure you let your customers know what they get for all of those points. You could have a chart or something of that nature on display. The more points someone is willing to redeem, the better the prize. You get the point (no pun intended).
If you are a service oriented business, you can hand out business cards. As you respond to a person's needs for your service you can sign a spot on their card, stamp it, or whatever method you choose, and the 'x' time you responded the customer gets a discount.
My friend, who owns and operates a heater repair and service company, uses this technique. With each three services someone receives, the fourth one is free. He claims it has produced a lot of repeat business and a lot of word of mouth advertising.
There is no question this is a great technique that you can use for your business. If it were not, the bigger companies would not be using it.